Powerful new vessels bolster Boston Towing’s escort tug fleet

Massachusetts has two more reminders of its association with the concept of freedom. Independence and Justice joined Reinauer Co.’s Boston Towing & Transportation fleet this past year.

The 98-foot ASD tug Justice is a condensed version of the 128-foot Independence (featured in American Tugboat Review 2010). Justice was built as the backup vessel to Independence on Suez Energy’s Neptune terminal, an LNG project located 10 miles offshore from Gloucester, Mass., and as a general assist tug in Boston Harbor. As part of the harbor duties, Justice will assist the LNG tankers calling at the Distrigas terminal on the Mystic River in Everett, Mass.

Justice is a 98-foot ASD tug designed to escort tankers delivering LNG to a terminal 10 miles off the coast of Massachusetts. Brian Gauvin photo.

Although smaller, Justice is no less powerful. With two MTU-4000, M-61 mains and Rolls-Royce Aquamaster 2600 mm, US-255-CP 4150 z-drives producing 5,400 hp, the tug achieves a bollard pull of 70 tons.

The CP propellers’ pitch can be feathered to reduce engine power requirements while firefighting. That allows the mains, through a PTO, to power the FiFi-1 system. The configuration eliminates the need for two additional engines to run the Nijhuis fire pumps, saving cost and space.

Justice is equipped with a Markey VFD, DEPC-52 single-drum ship-handling winch on the foredeck and a JonRie InterTech model 512 single-drum towing winch aft.

Left to right, AB Mark Noonan, Capt. Paul Fini and Chief Engineer Palmisano. Brian Gauvin photo.

Robert Allan Ltd., of Vancouver, British Columbia, designed the vessels. Derecktor Shipyards, of Bridgeport, Conn., built Independence, and the J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding yard in Tacoma, Wash., built Justice.

Besides size, the main difference between the two vessels is the hull design. Independence, with the sea conditions of a North Atlantic winter in mind, has a RAstar hull with sponsons, while Justice is a RAmparts 3000 design, without sponsons.